On the day that James Posey was introduced in New Orleans and vows to do whatever the coach asks of him for a team he sees poised to make a run at the title, the Celtics officially re-signed Eddie House and Tony Allen. On Sports Tonight, Tony said that the math was simple. If Posey signed, he and Eddie would have had to find a home elsewhere. It was one or the other. Danny said that Doc was worried about letting Tony go because he feels that Tony is going to have a break out year after watching him practice at the end of last season.
Another player who would have fit nicely on the Celtics is off the market. The Rocky Mountain News reports that Chris Andersen is returning to the Nuggets. The Birdman had visited Boston for 2 days early in the free agency period and Danny seemed to have interest in him and vice versa. Now, Andersen has agreed to a one year contract with the Nuggets and will continue his NBA comeback in Denver where he was a fan favorite from 2001-2004. I was hoping the Celtics would sign him, even though they already signed Patrick O'Bryant to back up Perk since O'Bryant may be more of a project than immediate help and Andersen would come in with athleticism and energy off the bench at the center position. Good signing by the Nuggets.
Denver was reported to be seriously considering signing Francisco Elson to replace the recently departed Marcus Camby. With Andersen signing in Denver, that leaves Elson out and looking for another team that may want him. Depending on how quickly Patrick O'Bryant develops, a one year league minimum contract to Elson might make sense for the Celtics. Although, it would remain to be seen how KG would feel about playing with a guy who called him gay.
Another player who had been linked to the Celtics as a possible Posey replacement was Maurice Evans. Mercury News reports that the Warriors have signed Evans to a three-year, $6.4 million deal. This means that the Warriors will not match the offer that their restricted free agent Kelenna Azubuike signed with the Clippers. Evans would have made sense to replace Posey because he is an athletic swingman who's known as a solid defender and good three-point shooter and would have filled those roles left vacant by Posey's departure.
The Clippers and Jazz have swapped point guards. The Clippers will receive Jason Hart from the Jazz and will send Brevin Knight to Utah. Last season, when the Celtics were in the market for a back up point guard, Knight was considered a serious candidate but signed with the Clippers instead while Sam Cassell was bought out by the Clippers and ended up signing with the Celtics. This is starting to feel like a game of 6 degrees of separation.
In David Thorpe's chat on ESPN.com, he was asked what he thought about JR Giddens and whether he will amount to anything or if Danny wasted a pick on him. Thorpe's response was that his athleticism could be a help off the bench. And when asked which 3rd year guy he sees improving the most from his sophomore season, Thorpe mentioned that Rondo should improve his game overall for next season.
The Portland Trail Blazers signed guard-forward Nicolas Batum on Wednesday. Batum played the past three seasons in the French ProA League. He was the 25th overall pick in the draft by Houston who traded his rights to Portland. Leading up to the draft, Batum was a popular choice on the mock drafts for the Celtics with the 30th pick.
The OC Register reports that the Lakers are no longer pursuing a trade for Ron Artest. Instead of the Ron Ron rumors in Laker land, there is talk that the Lakers have joined a list of teams interested in signing Luol Deng. The Bulls and Deng are having a hard time coming to an agreement on a deal and so rather than risk losing him, they may resort to a sign and trade and the Lakers are interested in making an offer if it comes to that. I can see a pattern to the players that the Lakers are pursuing this off season. Both Artest and Deng are known for giving Paul Pierce a hard time on defense. One of the problems the Lakers had in the Finals was trying to stop Paul Pierce. Getting either Artest or Deng would assure them of having a player who has given Pierce problems in the past. Now, if they only had an answer for KG, Ray Allen and Leon Powe, they would be all set.
The Sixers have reached an agreement with Royal Ivey, who spent last season with the Milwaukee Bucks. Ivey will not officially sign the minimum-salary contract until Monday, which is believed to be for 2 years and include a significant guarantee. Ivey will come off the bench to complement Lou Williams, that is, if the Warriors don't lure Williams away from Philly. That will give the Sixers 9 players under contract.
Now that Josh Childress has made the leap to play in Europe next season, there is a lot of talk going around about other's following suit. Perhaps the most interesting is Jason Kidd talking about going to Europe when his contract is up. Playing in Europe could extend a player's career by a few years because they don't play the physical game that is found in the NBA. This is also why many European players have trouble adjusting to the NBA as they aren't used to the physical play that they run into when they come here. Carl Landry is also considering a jump to Europe if he can't get a satisfactory offer from an NBA team. Nenad Krstic is also considering joining fellow Nets free agent Bostjan Nachbar in accepting an offer to play overseas if he can't get the right deal from an NBA team.
On the other hand, Bobby Brown, who made a big impression with his summer league play, rejected several offers to play overseas and is set to sign a 2 year deal with the Sacramento Kings. It seems that Brown was in demand as the Hornets pursues him along with Israel's Maccabi Tel-Aviv and Spanish giant Barcelona before he decided to accept the Kings' offer.